- Audio CD (17 May 2010)
- Number of Discs: 2
- Format: Double CD, Live
- Label: Inside Recordings
- ASIN: B003C5FMIA
- Other Editions: Audio CD | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 92,479 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
Love Is Strange [Digipack] Double CD, Live
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Love Is Strange
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Jackson Browne and David Lindley's Love Is Strange is a chronicle of their 2006 tour of Spain, performing in Madrid, Barcelona, Oveido and Sevilla. The experience is expressed by Jackson Browne as "a CD of some recorded moments, or perhaps a bridge, or a small door, between a life lived mostly in America and time spent with some really good friends in Spain." Love Is Strange features the amazing talents of Luz Casal on vocals ("These Days"), Kiko Veneno on vocals and guitar ("Tu Tranquilo", "The Next Voice You Hear"), Carlos Nùñez on whistle ("The Crown On The Cradle"), Tino di Geraldo on tables on cajon, Raul Rodriguez on Tres, Charlie Cepeda on Baritone Guitar and Javier Mas on Banduria, Archeleud. Love Is Strange is a collection of songs you know, songs you love and songs re-imagined for a remarkable series of concerts that were recorded to chronicle this journey.
Top customer reviews
Also when I pre-ordered this CD I was slightly worried that this might be a live recording too far after Jackson's excellent solo acoustic albums. However, the prowess of Lindley on various instruments gives this recording something different. Recorded in Spain this album sees Browne and Lindley joined by Tino de Geraldo (percussion). On some tracks extra musicians feature.
Song selection? There are some songs here associated with Lindley which i wasn't familiar with but which work well in this context. And given the strength of the Browne catalogue, it would be quite hard to select anything other than brilliant songs from that side of the partnership. It's good however to see Call It A Loan, which was my favourite song on Hold Out getting a run out.
Although it is a long album (approx 2 hour), there is enough variation in how the songs are treated to prevent listening to it as a whole being a chore. Sit Down Servant is a spritely run through the spiritual, whilst Sydney Carter's the Crow On The Cradle, with fiddle and whistle, sounds Celtic. Take It Easy is reincarnated here as a folk stomper. Mercury Blues with Lindley's Hawaiian guitar and singing to the fore is a slice of shuffle beat Americana. In fact although there is the introspection you would expect in such songs as For Everyman a large chunk of this album has something of a folk feel to it and the sound of musicians simply enjoying themselves without falling into self indulgence. Well apart maybe from Love Is Strange/Stay which goes on a bit too long for my liking.
Apart from Tu Tranquilo which is sung by Koko Veneno, the second disc features impeccable versions of some of the most enduring classics from Browne's early albums. Restricted to just vocal, piano, guitar and percussion Late For The Sky is still as powerful as it was all those years ago. These Days sung by Luz Casal has apparently quite a lot of mileage left in it.
I also have to mention the recording quality, which to my untutored ears, seems exceptionally well balanced. With its varied approaches to the songs this Spanish tinged recording is well worth a listen.
It is also accessible on many levels. If you like to have JB on in the background creating a very pleasing audio wallpaper, then it is very capable of that, though it would be a shame if this were all you did. If you prefer to immerse yourself into the lyric and let the imagery of the songs transport you to another place, then this is perfect. After all these years, Jackson Browne's voice is as engaging as always and has a maturity, warmth and tonality to charm the most critical of listeners.
The unsung hero and understated co-author, David Lindley, deserves his spotlight moment and recognition for the important part he has played in JB's career too. This is very much a joint album.
Some albums are immediately likeable, some take time to open up and 'come to the listener'. In my experience, those that I like immediately tend to be shorter lived on the CD players (I get bored without something new to find in the album but often come back to them a year later). This album is simply stunning, timeless and reveals something new on every listen (despite my knowing the songbook very well).
Life is too short to miss out on experiences like this. Don't hesitate. Buy this album.
I've liked (and at times loved) Jackson Browne's music since the early Seventies. But of late, like so many artists of the period - I greet their albums with either a sense of trepidation or an out-and-out yawn. But this is GORGEOUS it truly is...
"Love Is Strange" is a live 2CD set recorded to absolute perfection in Spain. Along with long-time sidekick and expert musician DAVID LINDLEY a small band accompanies Browne on acoustic versions of his best songs from right across his huge catalogue. The result is incredible. Songs you haven't heard in years (like the beautiful "Your Bright Baby Blues" from "The Pretender") now sound so moving - they're old yet new again - reinvented in a truly sweet way.
Vibe-wise it's very MTV unplugged, but it 'so' works. Stripping down the band to just pure instruments, it brings out the lovely melodies that have always been there. Even something as overplayed as "Take It Easy" sounds fresh. It's on here twice, first in English then a Spanish language edition called "Tu Tranquilo" which is radically rearranged - almost unrecognizable - and yet again - it works.
There's lots of spoken intros - many in the local tongue and a genuinely warm audience response to each. Oldies like "Running On Empty" (a great finisher on Disc 2) sit perfectly alongside newer material like "I'm Alive" (lyrics above). There's also a feeling that the band gave real thought to the arrangements - how to get the best out of the songs. So just when the acoustic guitars threaten to become too repetitive - they introduce a piano to the next song thereby breaking up the listening experience ("Late For The Sky").
Virtuoso guests include TINO Di GERALDO, CARLOS NUNEZ, JAVIER MAS, KIKO VENENO and LUZ CASEL. The soloing from each is exceptional and the whole recording is draped in an intimacy that makes you wish you'd been lucky enough to have been at these gigs.
To sum up - as other reviewers have quite rightly said - if you've any passing interest in Jackson Browne and his music - then you need to hear this.
Properly exceptional. Beautiful stuff. Big time recommended.